Church of Saints Peter and Paul (Guardian of Bantayan)
Visiting historical and old churches is always part of my to-do list every time I go on a holiday anywhere in the country. In 2010 I had an opportunity to explore Bantayan Island in Cebu with my friend Ruel and visit the Church of Saints Peter and Paul.
To reach the church we rode the tricycle from Yoonek Beach Resort. It is facing the town plaza and the port. No wonder the century old church is used as a refuge by Bantayan folks from calamity and invasions of the Moro in the early days.
The Church of Saints Pater and Paul are 430 years old and was founded in 11th of June 1580 by the Augustinian Priests. It was known to be the first and oldest parish establishes in Cebu and was offered to Nuestra Señora de la Asuncion. According to records the parish territory extended to Maripipi, Panamao and Limangcawayan in Leyte. The church was burned and destroyed by Moros in 1600. The current structure was constructed in 1839 and completed in 1863.
Like most old churches built by the Augustinians, the walls were made of coral stones and used to have a Tisay Clay roof but latter replaced by Stainless Steel. Inside the church one will see the life size statues of Saints Peter and Paul. Unfortunately the Museum was closed when we visited and so I’ve got limited information regarding the church and the place. Very few information is available online about the church and I cannot even find much information from NHI website.
If I have time I will probably go back to the Augustinian Museum in Intramuros to dig information about the churches they’ve built in the entire archipelago.